Times Quick Cryptic No 1782 by Teazel


9:47. Definitely some chewy bits here, but my kids didn’t help! There’s a bit of loose wordplay, for my tastes, but I didn’t mind.


A brief summary of cryptic crosswords —feel free to skip— :

  • Each clue has at least one “definition”: an unbroken string of words which more-or-less straightforwardly indicates the answer. A definition can be as simple as a one-word synonym; but it can also be a descriptive phrase like ‘I’m used to wind’ for REEL or SPOOL. A definition by example must be indicated by a phrase like ‘for example’, or, more commonly, a question mark (?). Thus ‘color’ is a definition of RED, while ‘red, for example’ or ‘red?’ are definitions of COLOR. Punctuation (and capitalization) is otherwise irrelevant.
  • Each clue may also have an unbroken string of words which indicates the answer through wordplay, such as: using abbreviations; reversing the order of letters; indicating particular letters (first, last, outer, middle, every other, etc); placing words inside other words; rearranging letters (anagrams); replacing words by words that sound alike (homophones); and combinations of the above. This is by no means an exhaustive list, but the general theme is to reinterpret ordinary words as referring to letters, so that for example ‘lion’s head’ indicates the first letter of LION: namely, L.
  • Definitions and wordplay cannot overlap. The only other words allowed in clues are linking words or phrases that combine these. Thus we may see, for example: “(definition) gives (wordplay)” or “(definition) and (definition)” or “(wordplay) is (definition)”.
  • The most common clues have either two definitions, or one definition plus wordplay, in either order. But a single, very misleading definition is not uncommon, and very occasionally a definition can also be interpreted as wordplay leading to the same answer. Triple definitions (and more) are also possible.

My conventions in the solutions below are to underline definitions (including a defining phrase); put linking words in [brackets]; and put all wordplay indicators in boldface. I also use a solidus (/) to help break up the clue where necessary, especially for double definitions without linking words.

After the solutions, I list all the wordplay indicators and abbreviations in a Glossary.


1 Don’t hit / girl (4)
MISS – double definition
7 Radios covering / end of nasty dictatorships (9)
9 Total love [for] wrestling (4)
10 Call for artist [to produce] exciting work (4-6)
William Turner: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Turner_(painter)
11 A short distance dogs perhaps returned (4)
STEP – PETS reversed
12 There is no variation / in any case (3,3,4)
ALL THE SAME – double definition
16 Pipe organ I played [for] two children (6,4)
Pigeon pair: https://www.lexico.com/definition/pigeon_pair
19 A container [is] not closed (4)
21 Starting a baby [is] the idea (10)
CONCEPTION – double definition
23 Cultivate grand argument (4)
24 Endurance [of] ill-fitting red outfit (9)
This anagram took me ages.
25 Controlled temperature [in] tirade (4)


2 Northern people in university computing (5)
3 Strike [means] deduction from pay (8)
STOPPAGE – double definition
Stoppage: https://www.collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english/stoppage
4 Like some of Bach’s music, full of runs [and] economical (6)
5 Tin on top of long grass (6)
Grass, definition 4: https://www.collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english/grass
6 Part of school I arrange [for] storyteller (4)
8 How erotic is a sauna? (6)
STEAMY – cryptic (double) definition
I understand the clue to be asking: Which synonym of ‘erotic’ can also describe a sauna? (I’m not sure there’s a way to parse the clue as a straight double definition.)
13 A gentle knocking [in] bathroom fitting (3)
TAP – double definition
14 Warden puts on a stone; I don’t recognise him (8)
The second clue is an example of a descriptive phrase that alludes to the answer.
15 Warning [that] waiter will get nothing? (3-3)
TIP-OFF – “TIP OFF!” = “waiter will get nothing!”
Question mark because the clue suggests only one example of a warning.
17 What baby needs [is] to sleep with family (6)
Napkin, definition 2: https://www.lexico.com/definition/napkin
18 Problem in a rising display of hostility (6)
ANIMUS – SUM IN A reversed
20 Ranch of Ron’s regularly [provides] fruit (5)
ACORN – every other letter of RANCH OF RONS
22 Worry, [being] mixed race (4)
CARE – anagram of RACE


Wordplay indicators

and = linking word
being = linking word
covering = containment
end of = last letter
for = linking word
ill-fitting = anagram
in = linking word
is = linking word
on top of = next to, in a down clue
part of = hidden
played = anagram
(to) produce = linking word
provides = linking word
regularly = every other letter
returned = reversal
rising = reversal, in a down clue
with = next to

Abbreviations and little bits

computing = IT (also from ‘sex’, ‘appeal’, ‘vermouth’)
grand = G
love = O
problem = SUM
runs = R
(a) stone = ST
temperature = T
tin = SN

university = U

99 comments on “Times Quick Cryptic No 1782 by Teazel”

  1. Just over 10 minutes for me, with at least one of those spend on my LOI ANIMUS. I read STEAMY more as “how is a sauna?” and “erotic” so a sort of double definition with one inside the other.
  2. DNK STOPPAGE in the deduction sense. LOI PIGEON PAIR: it took a long time to arrange the anagrist in my head, all the longer as I’d never heard of the term. 5:55.
    1. It came up in the 15×15 in August (27740) and you said you’d never heard of it then too!
  3. I took a while on:


    Thank you, plusjeremy and Teazel,

  4. 9 minutes. It didn’t come to me immediately but I remembered PIGEON PAIR eventually as it was in a 15×15 puzzle I blogged last August. I claimed it was new to me then, but on checking this morning I found it was in another 15×15, also blogged by me way back in 2009. Definitely its first appearance in a QC though. For all that, the expression hasn’t yet made it to Collins Dictionary, nor is it in Chambers on-line, although it’s in the printed edition and also in the Oxfords / Lexico.
      1. Thanks, Jeremy, I think what you have is a paid-for app? I have the 12th edition printed, but on-line I can only access the free one and usually mention that, but didn’t today.
          1. As you have the paid-for app you won’t need this, but it may be useful to others: https://chambers.co.uk/search/

            What’s slightly annoying is that it would appear to incorporate the full 21st Century Dictionary but experience proves that it doesn’t by any means. It’s cut down somehow but on what basis remains a mystery. And they are missing a marketing opportunity to advertise an upgrade to the full version to those who are prepared to pay for it.

  5. All green in 11 again so a good run continues. I’d also never heard of PIGEON PAIR but once the checkers were in and I’d decided the end must be PAIR there wasn’t much else to do with the remaining P, O and G so in it went. FRUGAL went in with me having to trust ‘fugal’ was something musical and held up by ANIMUS where I was looking at the wrong end of the clue for something to reverse, PAGE TURNER where I had all the checkers but was slow on the uptake and LOI STEP where I was just dim – looking to go down from dog to a breed rather than up to the more general. Two big groans when they fell. Always nice to get SN for Tin – makes me feel like I can do crosswords.
  6. I always enjoy Teazel’s puzzles and today was no exception with several clues making me smile. I thought I was on for a very quick time but the SW slowed me down at the end with the unknown PIGEON PAIR needing most of the checkers and LOI ANIMUS some thought. My standout clues were CONCEPTION and PAGE TURNER and I finished in 8.26.
    Thanks to Jeremy
  7. 13:06 so quite a lot slower than yesterday. NHO ‘pigeon pair’, and thought the CONCEPTION clue was a little loose – starting a baby is surely CONCEIVING, but an idea is a CONCEPTION. LOI PAGE-TURNER.
    1. ‘Starting’ is being used as a gerund. This comes up all the time, so it pays to remember!
  8. Defeated by 18D Animus, for which I was looking for a word for hostility backgrounds after the ‘a’, and also by the crossover of 4D and 10A. Having seen painter at the start of 10A with the crossers I had, I couldn’t unsee it and eventually looked it up. Very frustrating to understand it now, especially as I do know Turner! I wonder if any other less experienced solvers will make the same mistake?

    45 minutes in all, with the bottom half much easier than the top for me.

    FOI 2D Inuit
    LOI 4D Frugal, which was much easier when not trying to fit an i from painter into it!
    COD – Nothing particularly stood out, but I quite liked the parsing of 7A Tyrannies which I tentatively added despite not having heard of tranny for radio.

    Many thanks for the excellent blog Jeremy, and thanks Teazel for QC.

  9. was the artist that came to my mind. Rough contemporaries.
    Came here as stupidly I didn’t see the anagram for FORTITUDE 24a.
  10. Not a 15x15er, and never come across the feathery siblings before, so needed all the checkers for that. ANIMUS also took a while to register. At 9A with the U and O my immediate thought was Judo, sort of a wrestling theme, but that clearly didn’t parse – however it seemed to block any other coherent thought so I had to come back to it a bit later, when of course it was blindingly obvious. Odd how the mind works sometimes. Not easy overall for us in the SCC I think, but safely completed.
  11. Struggled mightily for PIGEON PAIR, which I had never heard of. At about 15 mins on the clock I thought this would open the final two, TIP OFF & ANIMUS, but did not get them. I jotted down ANIMUS on my scratch pad, but didn’t see the rising part as was looking for a five letter word, I also didn’t really know what it means. As for TIP OFF, I was not expecting a Double Def, and was looking for a nothing (=O) in a word for waiter. (“Staff” was close).

    At 7a, I think that “trannies” these days more commonly means transvestites, which would have made for a different clue. Any takers?

    COD SNITCH : nice use of more obscure element and two secondary meanings for excellent misdirection

    1. At least in the US these days, ‘tranny’ is a derogatory term for a trans (as in transgender) person. At least according to Collins this seems to be the case in the UK as well.
      1. I agree, and probably a word worth avoiding by setters, especially as its older meaning is now obsolete.
        1. I’m not sure that I understand your query Kevin, TRANNY for transsexual is definitely considered derogatory in these parts, and in these days of sacred cow status for gender politics. IMHO it is similar to QUEER for gay 20 years or so ago.
          1. No, you understood me perfectly: I had no idea the word was considered derogatory. (Of course, your parts are different from my parts, but.) I’ve only heard the word used once or twice, by someone who would never have meant to be derogatory, hence my query. Thanks for letting me know.
  12. Forgot to thank Jeremy for the comprehensive blog. I am trying to assist a friend who is even less adept than me at crosswords, so the recent enhanced blogs have been an absolute godsend to both of us.
  13. FOI LIAR and LOI MISS solving in a circle it seems. No real hold-ups as finished in 08:39.
    NHO PIGEON PAIR but it emerged fairly easily I thought. I liked TIP OFF and PAGE TURNER.
    Excellent blog.
  14. Yes, chewy is the word, Jeremy. Fun, though. Some easy entries but some real head scratchers that I enjoyed unravelling. INUIT was my sole entry in the NW on first trawl and I had to come back to get MISS (!). I very nearly made the mistake of biffing Judo instead of SUMO. I worked out Pigeon once PAIR was obvious but I have never heard the term before. I liked TYRANNIES and ALL THE SAME and could add more. There wasn’t a duff clue in the whole puzzle IMO. It took me a few seconds into the SCC, though.
    LI were ANIMUS, PAGE TURNER and FRUGAL (I kicked myself vigorously for not seeing my COD FRUGAL much earlier. Many thanks to the teaser and to Jeremy. John M.

    Edited at 2021-01-06 10:04 am (UTC)

  15. Pigeon pair ? Really ?
    This setter should get another hobby – like pulling teeth without anaesthetic.
    1. Yes, but PAIR emerged quickly given crossers and the remaining letters could only make PIGEON. An unknown phrase to me, too, but what else could it be? This is the sort of things that makes Cryptic Crosswords interesting, surely? John.
    2. I was also annoyed, albeit only slightly, by PIGEON PAIR. Not because I didn’t know it – despite having been part of one for the first 18 months of my life! 🙂 – but because it was anagrammed, which is a pet hate of mine for obscure answers. But at least in this case it was easy enough to get all the necessary crossers to make it the only possible answer, so it only caused me a minor delay. Still, I do think each clue in a ‘Quick’ crossword ought to be gettable in its own right by the majority of solvers.

      Nevertheless, as your objection seems to be based more on the obscurity of the answer rather than the wordplay method, I would like to point out that for many people one of the most positive aspects of this pastime is that it increases their vocabulary. So I don’t see why the quick crossword shouldn’t have the occasional entry serving in that capacity. Again, my only concern is that they be clued unambiguously, which I don’t think anagrams do.


      1. Yes exactly. Non-cryptic puzzles really cannot teach you new words, because you have to know the answer from the definition alone.

        I somewhat sympathize, but I’m okay with PIGEON PAIR, because the PAIR part is easy to see and what else could the first word be?

        As an example of something you’d really hate, the main puzzle had the other day DYER’S-WEED via anagram, with D _ E _ S – _ E _ D from the checking letters. REED was a tempting possibility but doesn’t leave anything resembling a word, and ‘reed’ was in the clue, I believe. So that brings us to WEED, but what about the first part? It could be DYERS or DREYS. I chose right but others did not. I’m not a huge fan of that situation.

        My solution for these dilemmas? If it’s down to a placement of a few letters; make a guess, write it in, then type it into a search engine to check, and move on. Definitely write down a guess first; it’s crucial when solving to tap into your instincts — they’re usually correct.

  16. Finished but looked up Dictatorships – trannies/radios made me laugh but agree should be avoided now. Also looked up Hostility and Grass.


    LOI PIGEON PAIR. Got Pair but couldn’t sort the other letters. As my garden hosts about 30 of the wretched birds, I should have got that sooner. Also slow on clever clue NAPKIN, tho somewhat obsolete too. FRUGAL took a while.

    Liked PAGE TURNER, COD, and TIP OFF too. And STRANGER.

    Thanks for v helpful blog, Jeremy.

    Edited at 2021-01-06 10:24 am (UTC)

  17. Date: Wed, 6 Jan 21

    FOI: 1a MISS
    Time to Complete: 1 hour+
    Clues used with aids: 6 (7a, 10a, 3d, 4d, 5d, 18d)
    Aids Used: Chambers Crossword Dictionary
    Total Answered: 25/25

    This was a strange one for me today as I really felt that the answers were there, on the tip of my tongue. Yet they kept escaping me. Took me over an hour to complete, and I ended up having to use Chamber’s for 6 of the clues.

    16a PIGEON PAIR. I did actually get that, but it was more a case of “it has to be that” rather than me knowing the answer. I have never heard of “pigeon pair” before. It was nice to see I had the right answer when I came here.

    17d NAPKIN. I spent way too long on this one, trying to force the word “Nappy/Nappies” and their variants into it. It wasn’t until kin for family sprang to mind that the answer came to me.

    Another enjoyable completion, but I felt as if it should have been easier than I actually found it to be.

    1. It sounds like from your analysis you’d do well to shift the balance of your focus more towards the wordplay rather than the definition. Just a smidge, but it might be helpful for you! The approach should be something like: what does the wordplay yield, and could this *plausibly* be the answer? That’s how I got NAPKIN in maybe half a second: from the wordplay. Of course I’ve never heard of the word in that sense otherwise.

      Try it tomorrow and see how it goes.

  18. I enjoyed this. I especially liked things like the way “long” was smuggled into 5 down, SNITCH, where it looks like an adjective modifying grass, rather than a verb. I chuckled, too, at the sweet but simple MISS, 1 across and my FOI. I’d NHO 16 across, PIGEON PAIR, but it couldn’t be anything else. I hesitated for ages before putting it in but I don’t mind that it was an unknown when the wordplay was so obvious and anyway I learn new things all the time from these crosswords. BTW, how slow is the SCC? Asking for a friend.
    Thanks, Jeremy, for your wonderfully comprehensive and helpful blog and thanks, too, to Teazel
    1. I’m not sure the SCC has strict criteria. My view is that it’s a personal thing that indicates I found a particular puzzle difficult and the resulting solving time was significantly slower than average/’normal’.
      1. Thanks. I like that as a definition. Luckily, my time today keeps me out of the Club . My time yesterday put me in there and propping up the bar
    2. SCC. Louisa, in the early days, it varied a little but I think most of us have now settled on 20 mins. I know I have.
      Well done for staying outside it today. John.

      Edited at 2021-01-06 11:40 am (UTC)

      1. Thanks, John. I mainly stay below twenty minutes but not always. I stop at thirty whatever the grid looks like – for me , that counts as a DNF and a bad mood for the rest of the day…
        1. Hello Louisa. I’m definitely in the SCC. I would love to solve the QC in under 30 minutes – that would count as a super-fast time for me. Simply solving it at all is little more than a 50/50 chance for me, so far.

          P.S. I also get crotchety if, as today, I solve all but one or clues quickly, but still end up with a DNF. Today’s stumbling block for me was 18d: ANIMUS, which I never got – even after 30+ minutes of alphabet trawling.

          Good luck tomorrow.

    3. I think you’ll find that ‘long’ almost always has the meaning PINE, ACHE, etc.

      One has to develop a sense of which meanings of a word have a synonym which could possibly fit into the wordplay. Most of these will be 3-4 letters.

      1. Thanks, Jeremy. Although I do know that, it slips my mind sometimes when the surface is a great one.
  19. PIGEON PAIR held me up until I remembered it from a recent 15×15, the PAIR bit having gone in much earlier. I was held up at the end by having entered ANMUS for ANIMUS, which made CONCEPTION and FORTITUDE impossible. Soon sorted out though. FOI MISS. LOI, TIP-OFF. 6:51. Thanks Teazel and Jeremy.
  20. No time today as completed and interrupted whilst on a call handling system queue, but I would guess that it was just inside target when all was accounted for. Never heard of PIGEON PAIR, but like others, it fell as soon as I saw that PAIR fitted. Similarly, I was held up briefly when PAINTER looked like an option for the first 7 letters of 10a, but the correct answer came to me immediately that FRUGAL did. FOI MISS, COD SNITCH, LOI FORTITUDE. Thanks Jeremy and Teazel.
      1. Yes, I have heard the expression before somewhere sometime. Apparently in Australia if you have a matching but separate fridge and freezer, they are a pigeon pair.
        1. My mother used it.

          Top half much slower than the bottom half today.

          Thanks all.


      2. Yes, not heard it for a long time, but wrote it in without thinking. I am constantly surprised in this blog by words that are very familiar to me but unknown to most others, as well as the ones I have never heard of that everyone else seems to know. I suspect this is one of the hardest parts of setting a crossword – a population with wide vocabularies that don’t entirely match.
      3. Yes, strangely so well known to me as being when parents have two children, but must be a boy and a girl – the perfect clutch or pigeon pair – but I hesitated to enter due to the ‘two children’ rather than referencing a boy and a girl.
      4. Yes, regularly, when I was a child. It was generally said about two children close in age.
  21. Merrily worked through SE of puzzle and got bogged down in NW!
    I know of transistor radios but never dawned on me that ‘trannies’ was what I was looking for .
    Didn’t solve SNITCH as was thinking of (green) grasses, not the (rat) ones!
    Also was stuck on ANIMUS due to failure to link a sum to a problem.
    Good challenging puzzle all round.
  22. 23 mins for me – held up by 18dn “Animus” which didn’t immediately spring to mind. As a result, I went down the wrong path, and spent too much time looking for a 3 letter word for hostility after the “Ani”.

    NHO of “Pigeon Pair” nor “Stoppage” for a pay deduction, but couldn’t see what else they could be. Whilst a baby may need a “Napkin”, I was convinced it would need Nappies more, and so had an odd moment debating whether the singular was spelt with an “ie” before binning the whole idea.

    Enjoyed the rest, including 4dn “Frugal”, 8dn “Steamy” and 7ac “Tyrannies”.

    FOI – 2dn “Inuit”
    LOI – 18dn “Animus”
    COD – 5dn “Snitch” – simple and clever.

    Thanks as usual.

    Edited at 2021-01-06 11:30 am (UTC)

  23. Enjoyed this thanks setter and blogger. I agree that tranny for a radio is obsolete these days. I’m sure that tranny will be offensive to some people if used in the modern sense, but I have noted that queer is now frequently used by many in the gay community. I don’t get that – either something is offensive or not. Then again apparently you can be both racist and mysoginist if you are a rapper??
    1. There are a number of terms that “We can use it but you can’t”. Plenty of Black Americans, for instance, use ‘nigger’, and plenty of gay people use ‘queer’. If you’re white and straight, I’d strongly advise against using either.
      1. When the film ‘Reach for the Sky’ was transferred to VCD the immortal line, ‘Nigger’s bought it!’ was edited out!
        1. Really, H, your memory has let you down on this one! It was Guy Gibson in ‘The Dam Busters’.
      2. To add a layer of distinction, ‘nigger’ is a word which only has an offensive meaning. The word black people use within their own language community is a completely separate word ‘nigga’. If you don’t believe it ask a black person to say ‘water’. Well, in the US I mean. It doesn’t rhyme with ‘nigga’.

        The reason a nonblack person can’t felicitously use the word ‘nigga’ in a conversation with a black person has nothing to do with the offensive racist overtones associated with ‘nigger’. It’s merely inappropriate: using ‘nigga’ identifies the speaker as being part of a group which they don’t belong to.

        The specific sort of inappropriateness depends how the word is used (‘my nigga’, ‘that nigga’, etc — the word has many different linguistic shadings), but the general inappropriateness can be approximated by imagining how it would feel if you addressed a random woman on the street as ‘mommy’.

        1. Yes, that is certainly part of the history of ‘nigga’. What’s important to realize is that it is a derived word and not the same as the n-word. Again, an easy demonstration of this is to listen to how the “-er” ending is pronounced in Black American English.

          ‘Queer’ has similarly not only been reclaimed but gone a step further and become a new word with very different associations. It is now an inclusive umbrella term for anyone wishing to have a sexual or gender identity outside the mainstream. It now means something like “other”, but without negative connotations.

  24. 16 mins, but it felt much easier and quicker than that. The term PIGEON PAIR is new to me but coukd be completed using checkers. Thanks.
  25. Typically I skipped over 1a and my FOI was TYRANNIES although I initially misspelled it as tyrranies. I steadily built up from the checkers returning to the NW belatedly putting in MISS (so simple really) and INUIT. I had no problem with PIGEON PAIR as I have seen it once before but my LOI ANIMUS delayed me for nearly a minute. No complaints with my 7:32 finish. Thanks Teazel and Jeremy.
  26. ….in that once I’d got STOPPAGE (my 3rd one in) there were plenty of checked squares for me to work from. Those who solve the clues in strict order were similarly left with two absolute “gimmes” in the down clues with STOPPA-E and S-RANGER.

    I’d never seen NAPKIN used in that sense before. PIGEON PAIR remembered from 15×15 sightings.

    I’m not sure why anybody should consider the clue for TYRANNIES remotely offensive, since it only references radios. It’s all in your mind, and it should stay there !

    TIME 3:01 (8th on leaderboard at the moment)

  27. New year’s resolution – do the crosswords in the morning! I’ve been doing them so late in the day recently that there’s been no point joining in the fun here.

    This was fun – usually I find Teazel on the tricky side, but despite a few stickier ones, I got through it quite quickly, with just 16a (obvs) really slowing me down. I must have seen it before in the biggie but didn’t remember it at all.

    I’ve stopped timing myself to the second, so am doing a Jack and rounding up or down to the nearest minute.

    FOI Inuit
    LOI Pigeon pair
    COD Frugal
    Time 9 mins

    Thanks Teazel and Jeremy

    BTW just my experience, but I think the biggie is quite approachable today – I did it in about half an hour. Probably doing it in the morning while my brain is fresher is a good move 😅

      1. As someone who does teach a bit, at my local university, I think Jeremy is spot on – teaching really is the best way to improve!


        Edited at 2021-01-06 04:10 pm (UTC)

  28. 18:55. It seemed so straightforward but turned out to be very sticky in places. COD 5dn SNITCH.
    So trannies is offensve. I did not know. And queer? But aren’t they the Q in LGBTQ+
    1. If you have a friend who identifies as queer then it would not be offensive to say, “so-and-so, my queer friend”. Or, “do you identify as gay or queer?”.

      If you are yelling at some gay men, “get away from me you freakin’ queers!” then that would be offensive.

      Do you have any particular usages you’re wondering about?

  29. We really enjoyed Teazel’s challenge today which we completed in 11 minutes. Like many others we hadn’t heard of pigeon pair but “pair” was a write in and with the checkers in place it had to be pigeon. Thanks Teazel.

    FOI: liar
    LOI: pigeon pair
    COD: page turner (and we also liked “all the same” and “tip off”)

    Thanks to Jeremy for the blog.

  30. this morning from Great Missenden to Dovecote.

    FOI 1ac MISS

    LOI PIGEON PAIR – again!



  31. With just 2 fails – not bad for me.

    Animus – NHO and parsing I would not get – sum/problem?

    Napkin – convinced myself nappie worked even though the spelling and parsing was iffy! Baby needs and napkin – really??

    Overdue a fully completed puzzle..

  32. Thanks Teazel for an enjoyable puzzle and to plusjeremy for an informative blog. Completed with everything parsed in 14 minutes. I remember from many years ago a pub called The Pigeon Pair but I had no idea it referred to anything other than the avian variety (and indeed two of them were depicted on the inn sign).

    FOI – 9ac SUMO
    LOI – 18dn ANIMUS
    COD – shred today between 7ac TYRANNIES and 10ac PAGE TURNER

  33. DNF today – a bit too hard for me. Guessed PIGEON PAIR – nothing else fitted the anagram, but never heard of this. Did not get FRUGAL(NHO Fugal), PAGE-TURNER (too subtle) or STEAMY (just didn’t get it).
  34. Very educational comments above. Only one of us knew pigeon pair and trannies, quick solve for us, had to check meaning of animus, which we had remembered but not sure. Thanks Teazel and for the blog.
  35. Just under 10 minutes for this one …
    … but fully a quarter of that on LOI 18D Animus, which simply would not come, as I thought the definition was Problem and so looking for a word for hostility that i could run upwards to the opening A.

    Otherwise I share with many getting 16A Pigeon pair from the anagram and checkers without actually knowing the phrase, and having a MER at 17D Napkin, which seemed an odd clue with a weak definition. Babies need lots of things, but for me a napkin wouldn’t be in the top 50 of them!

    COD 10A Page turner, great clue.

    Many thanks to Jeremy for the blog, but did anyone else find it did not fit on their smartphone screen – the lines did not wrap round. Most odd.

    Edited at 2021-01-06 04:24 pm (UTC)

    1. Jeremy’s blog fitted on my Android screen in Landscape on my smartphone (Huawei) but did not wrap in Portrait, when displayed in my Chrome browser. However, when displayed in my times_xwd_times App, it did not wrap in either Portrait or Landscape and in addition seemed to split the screen in half. Altogether very odd indeed!
  36. Crikey, never expected to see a discourse on the N word on this blog!

    I came to this late in the day and rattled through it; only FORTITUDE and PAGE-TURNER required a second visit on the acrosses, and only ANIMUS on the downs. An unusually swift resolution for a Teazel. Lovely puzzle.

    FOI MISS, LOI ANIMUS, COD STEANY, time 1.2K for an Excellent Day.

    Many thanks Teazel and Jeremy.


  37. I was heading for a near PB of around 10 minutes but then got completely locked taking an eternity to get Snitch and then Page Turner and then Frugal. Then LOI Animus.
    As mentioned above Pigeon Pair known as one male and one female child making the perfect clutch – it was at the time (1970’s?) of the 2.2 average number of children per family – not looked up what it is today though..
    Spent a while on Napkin trying to get Nappy/Nappies or similar in. Not sure Napkin is really what a baby needs…
    Good fun but frustrating due to the time the last few took to drop for me.
    Thanks all,
    John George
  38. Very enjoyable puzzle and an educational blog. Is there a distinction between trannys and trannies? I certainly remember transistor radios being called trannie/s, not tranny/s. 16a not a problem but always associate this with a boy + girl or vv, never the same sex siblings.
    Otherwise, I found the N at all helpful until I had completed the S. Particularly liked 5d Snitch, 4a Sumo but that’s just for starters.
    Several breaks in my solve but eventually got on the wavelength to finish fairly quickly.
  39. Delayed by early work start from leaving a comment. PIGEON PAIR was an addition to my vocabulary. Pigeon toe, Pigeon pie, Pidgin English, but honestly, pair? I struggled to see why ANIMUS related SUM to Problem, so went to consult Jeremy’s excellent decryption, and today studied it with more than a superficial glance. Thank you so much for the detailed breakdown of QC syntax and direction (and misdirection) indicators. I am sure it will give me a more structured approach to the puzzle tomorrow rather than my usual ambling style. Thanks Teazel.

  40. My solve-rate for Teazel QCs is less than 30% and none of those have been quicker than three-quarters of an hour. Imagine my delight then, when I had just one clue to solve with only 23 minutes on the clock. More than half an hour later, however, I gave up with that clue (18d) still unsolved.

    I have never heard the word ANIMUS and I did not realise that IN in the clue would feature quite as literally in the solution. I got the A and I did think of SUM reversed (along with various other things), but 30+ minutes of alphabet-trawling eventually proved fruitless. As I don’t permit myself the use of any aids when attempting the QC, I should have pulled the plug much earlier than I did.

    So, a Teazel DNF (yet again!), despite being so close to what would have been a top five time for me.

    My thanks to plusjeremy and (through gritted teeth) to Teazel.

  41. I knew Pigeon pair, not quite sure how. Napkin is the proper name for what people now call nappies so is suitable for a baby.
    The thing is though that saunas aren’t steamy. They have a dry heat unlike a steam room.

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